It’s a good thing…..

It’s a good thing that I have my lunchtime QRP opportunities, as lately, I seem to get more “on the air” time from work than I do from home! The weekends seem to be filled with nonstop chores and house responsibilities. Time for Ham Radio is scarce and at a premium.

But during the work week, I get that one hour break for lunch. If I’m lucky, I’ll get out to the parking lot to find the bands hopping. This afternoon, I got lucky again.

I started my lunchtime session on 17 Meters, as has become my custom. I was fortunate enough to work two DX stations, S573DX in Slovenia and F5NTV in France.

After finishing with those two, I headed on over to the QRP Watering hole on 20 Meters. Once there, I called CQ for a bit, to be answered by John KG9HV, in Lafayette, IN. We had a nice 2X QRP QSO. I was on the KX3 and Buddistick, while John was using his Kenwood TS-570S to a dipole at 5 Watts. Even though the QSO was plagued by QSB at both ends, we were able to have a very nice conversation. And in fact, when the QSB let up, at times John was actually as good as 589!

The one bad thing about operating from the parking lot is dealing with the weather, kind of like a mini Field Day. It was hot (close to 90F – 32C), and it was the Noon hour, so the sun was at its peak. I didn’t feel like wasting gas to run the AC, though, so I just lifted the tail gate (rear door) of the Jeep and allowed it to provide some needed shade. The nice thing was that the building’s AC provided a nice refresher …… after a nice radio session.

Hamlog for Android is perfect for my portable logging needs. It’s super easy to use and has so many neat added on tools. I don’t even bother with plain paper, anymore. I recommend it highly.

As luck would have it, there’s not much to do at home tonight. While it would seem like it would be the perfect opportunity to get on the air, unfortunately there’s also a severe thunderstorm watch on until 10:00 PM.  I may get on for a bit; but I’ll have to be ready to pull “The Big Switch” at a moment’s notice.

72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP – When you care to send the very least!

Larry Makoski, W2LJ, is a regular contributor to and writes from New Jersey, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

One Response to “It’s a good thing…..”

  • Dave K1THP:

    What kind of mount do you use for the Buddistick? I assume you are using it parked and mounted on your car. I have a couple of Buddisticks and would keep on in the car for potable operation.

    I think you will be happy with a Vertical for home operation. I have used a Butternut for 30 years in a ground-mount setup with great results. I have had a max of 16 thirty three foot radials and have the antenna located 80 feet away from any man made structures.

    Dave K1THP

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